Parmesan & Prosciutto Scones

Parmesan & Prosciutto SconesLet me start off by saying thank you for the enthusiastic reaction to On Weight Loss & Eating Habits. It was far beyond my wildest expectations! Thanks to all who liked, shared, commented, and gave feedback. That post is now far-and-away the most popular on this site.

And now, let’s talk about scones. I love a good scone. Soft, buttery centers and crunchy, nubbly edges? Sign me up.

Parmesan & Prosciutto SconesThere are already three scone recipes on this site: a Blackberry Lime recipe that would be a great way to use all those delicious summer berries, a Salted Grapefruit variety that’s perfect for fall and winter, and a Gingerbread version that you should definitely plan to make over the holidays. But today, I’m delving into the savory side of things with these fantastic Parmesan & Prosciutto Scones.

This recipe is inspired by some scones I had at Darwin’s, a small chain of coffee shops in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Two weeks ago, when my parents and I were helping my little sister move into her new apartment, one of my jobs was to keep everyone caffeinated. I popped into Darwin’s many times for large iced coffees and sustenance. Aside from trying many of their breakfast sandwiches (all fantastic, by the way), on the morning that we went insane and decided to paint my sister’s room, I picked up three Parmesan & Prosciutto scones. Cheesy and full of salty prosciutto, they were just what we needed to keep us from collapsing.

Parmesan & Prosciutto SconesParmesan & Prosciutto SconesBut, being a baker, I had to nitpick. The scones were certainly good, but far too salty. They needed a little sweetness to balance out all of the cheese and ham. I decided right then and there that I would make them myself with a few adjustments, and two weeks later, here they are.

Parmesan & Prosciutto SconesParmesan & Prosciutto SconesAnd oh, are they ever good. They’re super buttery, full of Parmesan and bits of salty prosciutto, and have a little bite from freshly ground black pepper. A couple of tablespoons of honey round out the flavor, keeping everything savory, but not too salty. These scones are just right.

My Parmesan & Prosciutto Scones are better than those that inspired them, if I do say so myself. They’re perfect for a weekend breakfast, or topping with thick slices of tomato for the best tomato sandwich of your life.Parmesan & Prosciutto SconesParmesan & Prosciutto SconesParmesan & Prosciutto Scones
makes 8 scones

2/3 cup whole milk + more for brushing, very cold
2 tablespoons honey
1/2 teaspoon prepared Dijon mustard
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
1 cup freshly-grated Parmesan cheese
4-ounces prosciutto, sliced into 1/4-inch pieces
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, very cold, cut into pieces

For Topping:
3 tablespoons whole milk
1/2 teaspoon honey
1/4 cup freshly-grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for after baking (optional)

Preheat oven to 425F. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone baking mat. Set aside.

Make the scones. Pour whole milk into a measuring cup. Whisk in honey and mustard. Chill while you prepare the other ingredients.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and black pepper. Stir in Parmesan cheese and prosciutto, using your fingers to separate any pieces that are stuck together. Use a pastry blender to cut in cold butter until the largest pieces are the size of small peas. Stir in milk mixture with a silicone spatula or wooden spoon until a shaggy dough forms.
Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Use your fingertips to shape dough into a 1-inch thick circle. Slice into eight wedges with a large chef’s knife. Remove cut scones to prepared baking sheet.

Top the scones. In a small bowl, whisk together milk and honey. Brush the mixture over the tops of the cut scones. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake scones for 13-15 minutes, moving the pan from the top to the bottom rack at the 7 minute mark. Sprinkle scones with more cheese after baking, if desired. Let scones cool on the pan for ten minutes before serving.

Scones are best the day they are made, but will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two days.

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